South Africa: Vandalism Suspected After Fire Engulfs Another Alex Substation

A large part of Alexandra has been left in the dark again after a substation in the Vasco Da Gama area caught fire on Tuesday.

The fire had razed the substation to the ground and would require some work and time to repair, said City Power spokesperson Isaac Mangena.

Affected residents include those residing in 2nd and 18th avenues.

Mangena said while the cause of the blaze was still unknown, vandalism could not be ruled out because one of the gates leading to the substation was found to be broken.

By Tuesday afternoon, some of the cables were still smouldering, making it difficult for technicians to start the repair work.

"The repair work will involve putting in new infrastructure, including ring main units and cables that were totally destroyed in the fire.

"City Power anticipates that repairs will take at least 48 hours after which time power will be restored," Mangena said.

This is the second substation to catch fire, following a similar fire two weeks ago that left half of the suburb without power for almost two days ago.

Mangena said the substation, which was more than 50 years old, was set to be renovated as part of a project to upgrade electricity infrastructure across Alexandra.

He added R16m had been budgeted for the financial year to upgrade it.

"We apologise to the customers for the inconvenience caused by this unfortunate incident.

"City Power CEO Mr Lerato Setshedi has again appealed to the community to protect the infrastructure against vandalism and theft," said Mangena.

Source: News24

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